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  • The Oar House

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The Oar House

The Oar House Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Elegant
  • Website: http://www.portsmouthoarhouse.com
  • Phone: (603) 436-4025
  • Hours of Operation: Brunch: Sunday: 11:00am - 3:00pm; Lunch: Monday - Saturday: 11:30am - 3:00pm; Dinner: Monday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 9:00pm, Friday & Saturday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm, Sunday: 11:00am - 9:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: Seafood, American
  • Executive Chef: Ray Guerin
  • Dress Code: Smart Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Entertainment, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Private Room, Weekend Brunch, Wine
  • Entertainment: We feature live piano music inside Thursdays thru Saturdays.

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Bow Street
  • Parking: Private Lot
  • Parking Details: We have a private lot that has valet parking on the weekends and in summer months.
A word from The Oar House
Located in the historic "Merchant's Row" building at the edge of Portsmouth's old harbor, The Oar House serves fine food in a setting filled with mementos of the city's long and proud maritime heritage.
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Diner Reviews
  • "Valet parking was quick and convienent. The service was excellent and the food was quickly brought to us. I was running a bit late and the hostess was gracious enough to comply with a later time"
    Dined on 8/15/2014
  • "Everything was great. We had a party of 7, and everyone was very pleased."
    Dined on 8/9/2014
  • "The waiter was slow and dumb, he was more interested in pouring water in our glasses when we need no refill then bringing food and answer questions. Food is totally overpriced, tasted like fast food. No kids friendly cups. Interior was nice and a parking lot guy was very polite, though. Location is good, as well."
    Dined on 8/1/2014
  • "We had a group of nine for dinner. Dinner was delicious and service was very attentive."
    Dined on 8/1/2014
  • "The Oar House has been our favorite restaurant for many years. The food and service are first rate. Unlike many new restaurants, the noise level is such that you can hold a conversation. For a great evening you can't beat an evening at the Oar House."
    Dined on 7/27/2014
  • "My wife and I attended Sunday brunch a few weeks ago. We arrived on the earlier side (around 10:30) and the outdoor seating was empty aside from one table. We were seated at a table overlooking the water, and our waitress was prompt and attentive. The brunch menu is a little limited, but the quality of the food and service were both excellent (I had the eggs benedict, and my wife had the French toast). This is a great spot to bring out-of-town guests to capture the essence and beauty of Portsmouth, being right downtown on the water and providing one of the best views of the city. Plenty of things to do in the area before and after brunch as well. We definitely will be coming back in the future, and bringing guests."
    Dined on 7/27/2014
  • "Jaye provided fantastic service, the food was superb."
    Dined on 7/18/2014
  • "Reservation made for the main restaurant. Waited for host to appear. Never did. Very disturbing! Went inside. Approached bartender busily chatting away with customer, did not notice me. More disturbing! Finally noticed! Called in for someone. Two people came. suggested I go to outside terrace. It was unsettling! Did not coincide with my expectations. I gave it a try. I would've preferred and been happier if I was greeted by a host and taken to dine inside the restaurant. After all, I was celebrating my 60th birthday! The two individuals that suggested my sitting elsewhere made me feel unwelcome. Too tired. I settled to stay at the terrace. I will have to reconsider making any future plans to dine there again."
    Dined on 7/12/2014
  • "Had a wonderful meal at the Oar house deck! We were not rushed and the meal was fantastic! Will defiantly be back!"
    Dined on 7/5/2014
  • "Our party of 6 received a wide variety of meals from this restaurant. Some of the plates were full of fresh seafood while others were very small. I thought the price was high, but if you average out everyone's experience it was pretty good."
    Dined on 7/5/2014
  • "This was my first time at The Oar House and it was just perfect! The weather was beautiful so we ate outside and were seated immediately. Everything was delicious. I ordered to Oar House seafood dish which had shrimp, haddock and scallops in a lobster sauce. My fiancé had the pork tenderloin that was topped with a grilled pineapple salsa. Both dishes were well presented and outstanding. I was on vacation at the time and don't live in the area, so I probably won't be back for a while but I wish I could! PS - they also have valet parking since finding a spot in the middle of summer is practically impossible - so that was a plus!"
    Dined on 7/5/2014
  • "For the price point the menu selections were good but they screwed our order up and blamed it on training the kitchen staff.....no apologies, comps, nothing. Very unprofessional."
    Dined on 6/30/2014
  • "I believe the menu on the deck is trying to appeal to the masses. The restaurant doesn't seem to have an identity. Three in our party had bad stomach aches within a few hours of our meal. My sandwich had no flavor. I was disappointed. I don't think I will be back."
    Dined on 6/19/2014
  • "Still the cool historic location with great service. Food is very high quality. I had the duck breast and it was cooked to perfection. As good as any I have had in France. Steak Au Poivre was amazing. Vegetarian green curry also one of my favorites."
    Dined on 6/14/2014
  • "We were so happy to find a nice restaurant that has excellent food and atmosphere but is also kid friendly. Often times, unless you are going to a pizza place or chain restaurant, you are treated like a nuisance for bringing children.The staff here made us all feel welcome and comfortable. The food is out of this world and the valet was wonderful as well!"
    Dined on 6/13/2014
  • "We had the lobster and chicken salad sandwiches and they were very good."
    Dined on 6/10/2014
  • "I recently enjoyed a nice meal with 3 friends at the Oar House on a Saturday night. The food was very good. The service was charming and attentive. Half way through our meal we enjoyed guitar music. The Oar House has an old world kind of ambience. I liked that it wasn't loud and that I could enjoy thoughtful conversations with my friends. The meals were a little pricey but the quality more than made up for it."
    Dined on 6/7/2014
  • "We went for Mother's Day Dinner. Though we had requested out door seating, it wasn't available do to inadequate staffing. We were slightly disappointed by that since we picked it based on the outdoor seating to keep my 3 year old happy. My husband ended up taking him outside to look at the boats until our food arrived. Other than that everything was amazing! The staff was great and the food was absolutely delicious! Everyone left happy and full. "
    Dined on 5/11/2014
  • "The historical setting of this restaurant coupled with the intimacy of the setting made it a great place for date night. Everything we had was cooked to perfection and tastefully presented. I have to say the scallops wrapped in bacon could of been the only thing I ate and I would of been more than satisfied. Our service was exemplary with the wait staff checking to make sure that we had everything we needed. I would definitely be returning here in the future to try more of the menu!"
    Dined on 5/10/2014
  • "European friends visit once a year and we have made it a tradition to go to The Oar House. We always have a wonderful visit, never feel rushed and when they left, they asked if we could repeat the experience again next year."
    Dined on 5/5/2014
  • "As one of the oldest restaurants in Portsmouth, the Oar House is surviving by its name. A recent dinner there was unappetizing and expensive. My Caesar salad was very soggy. My steak-au-poivre,while cooked the way I like it, was too big and unappealing, served with bland potatoes au gratin. My dining partner's pork was overlooked and dried out. Glasses of wine were $10. "
    Dined on 5/4/2014
  • "Whenever I come to Portsmouth I like to eat here as it's off the beaten path a little bit. The food is always good"
    Dined on 5/3/2014
  • "Each time we visit The Oar House we come away wondering why we don't do it more often The food is always great and the staff is always very attentive, but not overbearing. Can't wait to go back!"
    Dined on 4/26/2014
  • "Next time I return I'll be sure to leave home the two surly teenagers. And the intoxicated friend (that kept asking for fries - that were delicious BTW) who fell asleep at the table (ok, passed out) ... it's going to be a while until our next outing. Thank you to our gracious server! "
    Dined on 4/20/2014
  • "My daughter and I enjoyed a lovely Easter brunch at The Oar House this past Sunday(4/20/143). I ordered Eggs Benedict with lobster instead of Canadian bacon. Excellent...lobster was plentiful and tender. The Hollandaise sauce truly homemade and outstanding. I love old spaces and the Oar House did not disappoint with exposed beams and brick and an added bonus of a well right in the dining room. "
    Dined on 4/20/2014
  • "went here for lunch and had a great hamburger....on side street opposite the tugboats.....lovely wood decor with beautiful boat pictures on wall.....great menu and very friendly and professional staff....waitress said dinner is very crowded so reserv ations are recommended....will return for dinner"
    Dined on 4/19/2014
  • "My parents came to visit and love going to the Oar House. It was great as usual, but I will admit the lobster was overcooked. I had some chunks in my meal, and all were a little chewy. Also, my dad had a half-lobster in his meal and he couldn't even crack the claw open. That was a little disappointing, but overall, everything else was still delicious."
    Dined on 4/12/2014
  • "Took our daughter and her boyfriend out to dinner to celebrate her 22nd birthday. Had a wonderful meal served by a very friendly and attentive waiter. One small goof-up: my daughter and I ordered the same dish, but she cannot tolerate any degree of spiciness, and I prefer a bit more spicy heat. Don't know if the waiter mixed up the 2 plates, or if the kitchen staff told him wrong, but I got the non-spicy plate, and she got the hot spicy one. One taste revealed the mix up; we swapped plates, and everything was fine. We sat downstairs, which is a very pleasant room. But I prefer being upstairs, where there is a very nice view of the river. We are looking forward to returning soon."
    Dined on 4/12/2014
  • "We were there for restaurant week, and it was not good. I had the lamb raviolis to start and they were tasteless and the sauce was thin and bland. Then I had chicken savannah which was dry and served on a bed of grated carrots! The bread pudding was dense and dry. A disappointing meal."
    Dined on 4/5/2014
  • "My wife and I ate there in late march. We had never been to Portsmouth NH before. The Oar House was one of two that we selected for our 2-night stay based on on-line reviews."
    Dined on 3/27/2014
  • "Charming place. Food was excellent - the Bruschetta appetizer and Lobster Mac& Cheese were highlights, Calamari appetizer was lacking. The hostess was very accommodating with our seating preference. Service was OK - waitress seemed stressed out and let us know it. I would go back."
    Dined on 3/22/2014
    Dined on 3/22/2014
  • "We sat in the dining area to the right of the entrance. Beautiful granite block walls made up the 4 walls of our area. Ambience was outstanding. We selected the Oar House because of its diverse menu. Two of us had seafood and the two men went for the beef. All agreed, the meals were excellent. Desert was home made and finished off a great dining experience. Our server, Corey was superb. She assured we were cared for through out the meal. A perfect ending to an excellent performance at the Music Hall where Chris Botti swept us away for two magnificent hours. We will be back'!!!!!!"
    Dined on 3/16/2014
  • "This restaurant is in an old building along the river. The ceilings are low, the walls are brick and there's no a straight line anywhere, bringing out the character and ambience of many years ago. The service and food were excellent."
    Dined on 3/16/2014
  • "This was our first trip back to the Oar House in many, many years, as we no longer live in the area. It was as nice as we remembered! Ambiance is lovely. Nice wine list. Service was great. We were seated upstairs, which is very cozy. Baked Stuffed Lobster was delicious, but there was a bit too much thyme in the stuffing for my tastes, personally. The Seafood Stew/Bouillabaise was great. We started with raw oysters and they were fresh and creamy and briny - yum! We didn't have room for dessert, but couldn't say no to Creme Brulee, and we are glad we didn't. Large enough to share and really tasty. We will definitely return next time we are in the area. Highly recommended!"
    Dined on 3/15/2014
  • "I never had the experience of visiting this restaurant before and found it very reasonably priced and a very friendly atmosphere and the food was fantastic. I had raved about this restaurant to my family the day. We will certainly return in the future. M"
    Dined on 2/14/2014
  • "Valentines day dinner...friendly service. Steaks were probably the best picked and cooked I have had in a number of years, however they were not seasoned to my taste."
    Dined on 2/14/2014
  • "This was the perfect restaurant for a brutal winter night: warm and cozy, atmospheric, with excellent food and outstanding service. The spinach and artichoke dip, rich with cheese au gratin, was memorable. A chicken barbecue pizza and some simply prepared local haddock were almost as good. The choice of wines by the glass was limited, but met the need. The location, right on the harbor, is a big part of the appeal. In winter, there are no views to speak of, because only the historic building, across the street, is open. But what a satisfying building it is: brick and stone walls, heavy wooden beams, and a variety of spaces -- some intimate, some lofty. Valet parking while the spaces last."
    Dined on 2/14/2014
  • "We arrived early hoping to be home for the openning ceremony of the Olympics. This was our first visit so we went with two different appetizers. (the best indicator of a restaurants quality/price points) The chicken and pork meatballs were wonderful and the sticky ribs were equally good. I then followed with shrimp and linguine and my wife had the oar hose specail seafood dish. Both were good although the shrimp dish had a bitter vegatable that I avoided. Service was excellent. ( thanks John) The palce was very quiet and hardly anyone was there . When we were leaving things had started to heat up. (again, we were early) Free parking steps from the door was a a welcome surprise in busy downtown Portsmouth!"
    Dined on 2/7/2014
  • "The food was good and the service was excellent, I have been in the food business a good portion of my life and really enjoyed the food. The only thing was when I went on line to find a resturant for Lunch, they said that they were open on Sunday's and served the Lunch menu and when we got there they said the dinner menu was only available. That was disappointing . Other than that is was great"
    Dined on 2/2/2014